The Kansas Wetlands Education Center is looking ahead to spring when the frogs and toads begin calling and the second season of the Cheyenne Bottoms FrogWatch Chapter starts once again.
If you love all things amphibian, or just like the idea of being out-of-doors at twilight or after, this program is for you. Despite last year’s drought conditions, one volunteer heard hundreds of plains spadefoot toads calling after an August rainfall, making the national list for unusual reports.
FrogWatch USA is a long-term volunteer monitoring program of frogs and toads. After a four-hour training, in which participants learn the seven local frog and toad species’ calls, data collection techniques and fun amphibian facts, you will be assigned to a location at Cheyenne Bottoms to listen and record frog and toad call intensities any time between 30 minutes after sunset to 1 a.m. for three minutes, twice a week. It’s that simple.
KWEC monitored one site last year, designating time periods to volunteers – for example, one volunteer monitored during April, another in May, another in June and so on. The normal monitoring season runs from February through August.
A volunteer-driven program, participants log in and send their reports to the national center, operated by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. There will be plenty of help available from KWEC’s FrogWatch USA Chapter Coordinators. Each volunteer will receive a FrogWatch kit that includes a frog and toad call CD, data sheets, clipboard, thermometer and flashlight.
So make the leap and sign up for a fun and important new program - by calling KWEC at 1-877-243-9268 by Feb. 4th. Training sessions will be scheduled after volunteers are identified.